"Paid for" shit & shame on the SMF team

Kat

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"Paid for" shit & shame on the SMF team
« on July 20th, 2011, 07:46 PM »Last edited on August 4th, 2011, 09:18 AM by Nao/Gilles
One of the reasons that I resigned as Vice-President of SMF and split from the forum, was that certain members (who I won't bore you to name) were in it for what they could get out of it, financially. (Not the main reason. But, it was a contributory factor).

As teamies, I believed that there was a conflict of interests, in much the same way as we all know about a certain Gamer who was into VB...

Can I ask for some honest opinions, on this, please?


Dragooon

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Re: "Paid for" shit.
« Reply #1, on July 20th, 2011, 07:54 PM »
I personally don't see a problem if they are honestly doing their job the way they are expected to, without letting their own desires ruining their needed contributions etc.
The way it's meant to be

Arantor

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Re: "Paid for" shit.
« Reply #2, on July 20th, 2011, 08:07 PM »
I'm not averse to team members producing premium products. If Bikken, for example, were made an SMF team member, it wouldn't bother me, with one proviso: that the team member who is hawking paid products doesn't put it above their commitment to the team.

I never had a problem with the people mentioned selling products, even if they were piles of crap in the end. I did, however, have a problem with them not contributing a decent amount of time to the responsibility they had accepted (and this is something I'm very firm on)

If you agree to be a team member, you're agreeing to take on a responsibility and complete tasks befitting that responsibility. If you do not do that, you have no right being on the team - and if you're going to sell paid products on the side, that should not be at the expense of the responsibility you have taken.

Being a team member does introduce a conflict of interests of sorts, however that can be remedied if you approach it ethically; there is no shame in offering good quality additional goods for sale provided they do not compromise the integrity of the rest of your work; unfortunately that is not a goal upheld by certain parties.

I am half expecting to make some packages for Wedge that are only available at a price. Not because of profiteering out of the platform but that they are niche products that require more time and energy to support than general mods. (Think of addons like a store front, for example. And, honestly, sad as it sounds, I may make the Wedge port of SD a paid product simply because of the support requirements, but I'll redesign parts of the UI anyway)

I may resurrect the community rule from ArantorMods, that things will be free but no support except for paid clients (if I do something it benefits everyone but if people want 1:1 work, they can pay for it) but in reality that didn't work out that well with people wanting support and getting fed up that they couldn't get it because they didn't read what was put in front of them.
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Kat

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Re: "Paid for" shit.
« Reply #3, on July 20th, 2011, 08:19 PM »
Quote from Dragooon on July 20th, 2011, 07:54 PM
I personally don't see a problem if they are honestly doing their job the way they are expected to, without letting their own desires ruining their needed contributions etc.
That's the point. They weren't, from where I saw things.

It wasn't the paid mods. Or, the paid themes. If people want to do that, that's fine.

It was the "Paid support" thing that I was uncomfortable with.

They could get all the support they needed for free. Yet, some people would be in there, offering to do the work for a fee, before anyone else had had the chance to offer support in the usual way.

I even know of one instance where the original post was deleted, so that normal members didn't get the chance to help.

Sorry. But, to me, that's wrong.

Dragooon

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Re: "Paid for" shit.
« Reply #4, on July 20th, 2011, 08:23 PM »
If they are asking for money for providing normal support, then yes, I can see that as a problem. But if they go an extra mile and provide a hands on, 1:1 interaction or help them guide through it(And in the process, supervise it themselves so it doesn't go wrong), then it is a proper job and they can ask money for that.

Kat

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Re: "Paid for" shit.
« Reply #5, on July 20th, 2011, 08:25 PM »
Yes, if something gets THAT complicated, maybe it's warranted.

But, for me, TEAM members who deliberately look for such posts, like vultures, who then get preferential treatment from the support lead, to facilitate their desire for some cash?

Neh. That stinks.

Thing is, I did a lot of really heavy stuff, myself. Some of the things I did took days!

But, I was a VOLUNTEER!

Volunteers don't expect money for what they do.

Or, at least, they shouldn't.

Arantor

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Re: "Paid for" shit.
« Reply #6, on July 20th, 2011, 08:29 PM »
Yeah, that sort of thing does stink, badly. I did, occasionally, do paid support for very specific cases that required more time and skill than the normal sort of thing, but it was very infrequent and very often it wasn't needed anyway as most support[1] could be dealt with very normally.

If that sort of thing is going on, it's flat out abuse of privilege. I'd mention the core values, that people have apparently signed, if it would make any difference.
 1. i.e. people needing help and not 'how to customise my shit'

Kat

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Re: "Paid for" shit.
« Reply #7, on July 20th, 2011, 08:33 PM »
I did get paid, once.

I'd really spent a lot of time on some guy's site, coz it kept getting hacked.

Took me three days to sort it all out.

The guy asked me for my address, so that he could send me some leaflets.

The bugger sent me $200 in cash! No return address, or anything.

I have to confess that the dosh came in handy, coz I was even more financially embarrassed than I usually am.

I was genuinely touched, by that, to be honest.

The guy was a total headcase, if truth be known.;)

Nao

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Re: "Paid for" shit.
« Reply #8, on July 20th, 2011, 09:35 PM »
I myself am very open about the 'paid for' matter. With paid work for Aeva Lite and Aeva Media, I made about $4000 in a couple of years. It's a lot, but it's also nothing if you consider I worked on it fulltime. Represents what... $20 a month? Eh.

Still, I made a choice when I started work on Wedge -- basically, I could either stay in the SMF community (and thus start building Wedge), or just give up on SMF, and do something else. Either return to game development (which has always been good to me, financially), or simply become a freelance dev for web agencies or something (although I doubt it'd be very rewarding.) Since I wasn't too excited at the idea of doing something I'd already worked on for over 10 years, I decided my passion for SMF was worth staying on.

I *thought* I'd be done with Wedge in a few months though... I don't know if I'd have chosen that path, had I known it wouldn't be out a year later. On the other hand, I'm very proud of how much it's BETTER than SMF2. There is no way in hell their devs are going to catch up with us. Even if we gave them a one-year headstart. That's how well we worked together on this, Pete and I.

Anyway, end of story.

Given my lack of interest for things of life (i.e. anything that costs money), coupled with shared costs, I can probably keep up with this for some time. So yes, I can afford not to be concerned with the business issue of SMF and Wedge, because I don't want pocket money. But I perfectly understand that some people
I prefer to owe no one anything right now. Pete and I are... mostly drawn by our interest in building a fantastic CMS. Or at least something we can be proud of.
Not everyone is driven by their passion. You just have to draw a line between paid stuff, and free community work. If you can't balance it out, then you'd better drop it altogether, you're better off working on 100% closed commercial software. That's just my idea of it.

Kat

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Re: "Paid for" shit.
« Reply #9, on July 20th, 2011, 09:58 PM »
Yeah, I can agree with that.

As I said, though, mods and themes are a totally different animal to support.

At least, they are, for me.

Maybe I'm just odd.

Nao

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Re: "Paid for" shit.
« Reply #10, on July 20th, 2011, 10:31 PM »
I never dwelved into theme support -- never used any. Only customized my own really...

Although ideally, Wedge should avoid most of SMF's theme support issues, if only because most of what people want to do can be achieved with skins. And they're easier to manipulate than themes...

Re: "Paid for" shit.
« Reply #11, on July 20th, 2011, 10:56 PM »
Premium stuff is just dandy for people with sites taking IN premiums. Us li'l kiddies that just want to host simple boards and are attracted to SMF for the S part...well...paying money just for glorious chitchat or political debate just ain't worth it.  ***taking a more serious look at SMFNew***
I shall continue to be an impossible person as long as those who are now possible remain possible

Nao

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Arantor

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Re: "Paid for" shit.
« Reply #13, on July 21st, 2011, 12:19 AM »
Don't go there, really. I would rather go to SMF For Free, knowing who owns it, than that.

The idea is that it is a hosted forum, and you don't have to deal with the usual crap. Except not full admin control and you have to pay to get your data out to move elsewhere, which as you grow, becomes necessary.

Re: "Paid for" shit.
« Reply #14, on July 21st, 2011, 01:27 AM »
Quote from Arantor on July 21st, 2011, 12:19 AM
Don't go there, really. I would rather go to SMF For Free, knowing who owns it, than that.

The idea is that it is a hosted forum, and you don't have to deal with the usual crap. Except not full admin control and you have to pay to get your data out to move elsewhere, which as you grow, becomes necessary.
Ya, I'm not familiar with whom owns what--I just look at the terms. Knowing that I was avidly avoiding upgrading my active board from 2RC2 to Gold, I set up a test board on SMFnew just to test drive Gold. And yeah, it was too much of a limitation for me to see how it handled. What bugs me is that when I asked about paid hosting, I was told I could put my board on their site for x amount of dollars and if I opted to have them do the transfer, it was an extra $30-ish bucks.  When I went back some weeks later to inquire as to how exactly to go about hosting my board, the reply I got presumed that their doing the transfer was the only option available.  I said I already had my stuff backed up on disk and would prefer to do things myself...and that's where the discussion ended.

Well, no matter how stuff winds up getting handled, one thing I know for sure--no Gold for me unless and until I can get every mod that I currently have on 2RC2 properly operational on Gold, and nobody can talk me out of it. ;)

It's fairly commonplace for a hosting service to throw a few bones to you for free while the whole featured shebang isn't available unless you pay a premium, though...and that includes limits on database size. It's pretty much par for the course.